York Musical Society were delighted to welcome Her Royal Highness Princess Beatrice of York last night to a Zoom performance of Handel’s Coronation Anthems. We were also joined by our Patrons Sir Ron Cooke and Dr Richard Shephard, Vice-Presidents Lady Gillian Barron and Philip Moore along with his wife Allison, and Kurt Calder from our sponsors, The Shepherd Group.

As we have adapted to the strange times this term and rehearsed via Zoom, we decided to treat our last two sessions as virtual concerts, complete with concert dress. Princess Beatrice joined us for the first two anthems and spoke enthusiastically about how everyone has adapted to the situation, and that she is looking forward to being able to join us in person sometime in the not too distant future.

We are planning to sing through the Vivaldi Gloria next week as our season finale.

YMS concerts and face-to-face rehearsals are cancelled for the whole of 2020. After much discussion, our committee has made the decision to cancel the November concert and the choral workshop in January 2021.

We will reconvene for our Monday evening rehearsals at St Olave’s School in January 2021. As the committee email to members put it, “We know this will be a huge disappointment, but we must make the health of our members and audiences our priority, and adhere to Government guidelines. If the situation changes and it becomes possible for us to get together sooner than January, then we will certainly arrange something”.

Planned concert dates for 2021 are given below and are truly something to look forward to.

But the choir hasn’t stopped being busy …

  • Many members meet on Mondays for online rehearsals via Zoom, with David Pipe and John Bradbury leading us through Handel’s Coronation Anthems and Vivaldi’s Gloria (our programme for the cancelled concert in York Minster, 13th June 2020). The hour of breathing exercises, warming up, and singing through both new and familiar pieces is a high point of the week for many of us, and it’s clear that music lifts the spirits at any time.
  • Our Committee are agreeing plans for how and when we can meet again and booking concerts for 2021.
  • Our AGM took place on 29th June, via Zoom, with c.80 members attending.
  • Our marketing volunteers go on communicating via Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. 
  • Individuals are phoning, messaging, staying in touch. The links and friendships are as important as the music.
  • To read more, see this recent article by Charles Hutchinson…

For further information, please contact us by email at comms@yorkmusicalsociety.org.uk


Thank you for your support and we look forward
to seeing you again in the future


Autumn term 2020

YMS will meet on Monday evenings as usual from September to December,
but online using Zoom,  to rehearse and sing Handel’s Messiah
and Christmas carols 


Concerts in 2021

13th March 2021
York Minster
Mendelssohn: Psalm 95
Haydn: Symphony no. 101
Mozart: Mass in C minor

12th June 2021
York Minster
Beethoven: Missa Solemnis
with Philharmonischer Chor Münster,
our partner choir from Germany

20th November 2021
York Minster
Haydn: Te Deum
Mozart: Horn Concerto no. 4
Haydn: Insanae et vanae curae
Michael Haydn: Requiem


Our combined 2019/20 and 2020/21 season of concerts
at York Minster is sponsored by Shepherd Group


York Musical Society (YMS) is a large and friendly choral society, directed by David Pipe. The choir sings most of its concerts in the wonderful setting of York Minster.

We look forward to seeing you at our concerts, annual workshop and other events. We always welcome new members and Friends of YMS.
Rehearsals take place on Monday evenings, 7.30–9.30pm, in the Shepherd Hall at St Olave’s School, York. 
For more details, see the
Get Involved page of this website – click here

To read more about YMS, see the About YMS page – click here

Photos of past concerts and events can be seen on our Gallery page


Support YMS by becoming a singing member, Friend or benefactor.